Leigh Miners travel to Yorkshire on Saturday to take on NCL Champions West Hull in the Inaugural NCL Steve Prescott Foundation Charity Shield, Kick off 2pm at the Arthur Miller Stadium, Stanningley.
The Charity Shield match pits the NCL Champions (West Hull) who won their second Grand Final by beating Wath Brow Hornets 16-12 in November against the Conference Challenge Trophy winners (Leigh Miners Rangers) who have won the competition for two successive years after it was introduced in 2012 to coincide with the move to summer rugby, all proceeds from the match will go to the excellent charity that is the Steve Prescott Foundation.
Unfortunately there will be no matchcast on Saturday but updates of the match will be available on twitter https://mobile.twitter.com/leighminersrl?p=i
Admission Prices for Saturday is £2.
For more information on the Steve Prescott Foundation visit http://www.steveprescottfoundation.co.uk/
Miners go into this match on the back of a tough 12-10 home victory against Hunslet Warriors in the first round of Tetley’s Challenge Cup two weeks ago and with playing West Hull this week followed by a trip to Kells on the 22nd February in round two of the Challenge Cup it is ideal preparation for the players to have three tough workouts before the NCL season starts at the beginning of March. The lads are all eager to pick up the first bit of silverware on offer this season on Saturday against a very good Wests side and will be looking for a similar if not better defensive performance to the one they showed in their first outing of the year against Hunslet Warriors. In attack Miners know they will have to be better and have a much higher completion rate after turning over way to much ball in the second half against Warriors but they are confident the more they play together the better their attack will become with their being a few new faces in the squad this year.
Coaches Allan Coleman and Paul Whitworth will have a fully fit squad to choose from but are expected to make a few changes from the side that beat Hunslet Warriors to give other players a chance to stake their claim in the seventeen for the NCL season opener away at Thatto Heath Crusaders.
“It’s a great idea that the league have put together – pitting the league champions against the cup kings and it will be interesting to see who comes out on top, said Coleman.
“We’ll be taking it very seriously and it’s a perfect opportunity for us to step up our pre-season against the most consistent side of 2013.”
“Last year we struggled for a meaningful pre-season run out but this year has been perfect with this game and couple of Tetley’s Challenge Cup games.”
“We have a good squad – probably the best numbers we’ve had since we took up the coaching role two years ago – and the game will give everyone a chance to stake a claim for a place on March 1 as well as start the season with some silverware.”
Miners appearance in the Charity Shield which will aim to raise funds for the Steve Prescott Foundation is yet another first for the club who have previously contested the first ever BARLA National Cup, NCL Grand Final and Conference Challenge Trophy Final.
“It’s clear to see how the Rugby League community want to see Steve Prescott’s legacy carry on,” added Whitworth.
“It’s an honour for us to pay tribute to him by being involved on Saturday against West Hull and I hope it catches the public’s imagination and we get a healthy crowd. I’m sure it will be a tough, uncompromising encounter which will raise some money for a fantastic cause.”
Champions West Hull go into Saturdays encounter with a tough 22-16 Challenge Cup win away at Division One Oulton Raiders last weekend, Wests coming back after trailing 16-6 to finish strong and set up a round two clash with Thatto Heath Crusaders next weekend. Try scorers for West Hull where Matty Plummer who helped himself to a brace, Lewis Brown and Josh Hart who also added three conversions. The green and golds have lost influential captain Scott Spaven to Doncaster in the off season but with having an already strong squad and a good production line from their excellent youth setup Wests will be confident of being up their defending their title again this time round.
Leigh Miners Rangers Charity Shield Squad
West Hull Charity Shield Squad
Miners u18s booked their place in the second round of the BARLA National Cup with an 18-12 win at Shaw Cross Sharks last weekend. Their reward is a trip to King Cross Park of Halifax in the second round.